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Cal Basketball Open Thread: Men at Oregon St., Women vs Oregon St.

Cal men's basketball at Oregon State, tipoff 7:30 PM PST
TV: FSN HD/CSN Bay Area (click here to see if your affiliate is carrying the game).
Radio: KFRC 1550 AM
Streams: Post links in comments
Injury report: Omondi Amoke (probable with shoulder injury)

To get set for Cal's matchup with Oregon State, check some of our posts from earlier today! Also do yourself a favor and read this feature about Sanders-Frison (Berkelium should've posted it in the GN), who's a native of Portland.

Markhuri Sanders-Frison figured out quickly how much he would like playing for California.

"I drove up here with my father, and the day I got here, Jerome Randle was outside my door saying, 'Let's go to the gym,'" said Sanders-Frison, a 6-8 junior center. "So we went to the gym, just worked on things -- like, the day I got here!"

Randle, a senior all-conference guard, set the tone for what has been a dream come true for Sanders-Frison. Despite limits on his playing time because of a tender back, he has loved playing for Cal, which could be headed for the program's first conference title in 50 years.

"This has been a great experience, just fantastic, man," Sanders-Frison said. "It was a long road to get here, but it's all been worth it."

Cal women's basketball vs Oregon State, tipoff 7 PM PST
TV: CSN California
Radio: KALX FM

Also tonight is the women's basketball game at Haas. Here's a PSA about the game (HT AndBears).

Thursday’s night’s game will be the annual WBCA Pink Zone game. All fans wearing pink can purchase general admission tickets for $3 and the first 2,000 will receive a special Pink Zone T-Shirt.

norcalnick discusses what the women have been up to and how they match up against the Beavers.

The last time the Cal women played Oregon St., it was an unseen classic. Cal won as Alexis Gray-Lawson dropped a school record 47 points in a double OT thriller. This time around? I'm willing to settle for a comfortable home victory. The biggest thing Cal can improve upon from their last outing against the Beavers is rebounding, as shocking as that may sound. When Cal isn't dominating the glass it's very hard for them to distance themselves, so when Oregon St. out rebounded the Bears (41-39) the game was tight the whole way.

The Bears would also help themselves out if they did a better job defending Talisa Rhea, OSU's number one threat. She didn't have the best shooting night against the Bears, but she got to the line plenty and ended the night with 25 points. The Bears know she's going to carry the burden on offense for the Beavers, so If Cal can shut her down the OSU won't have many other offensive options to turn to.

For an expert's view on Oregon St., we turned to AndyPanda and Jake B from BuildingtheDam to answer a few questions about tonight's games (our answers to their Qs are over at BtD). Check it after the jump!


1. 1-3-1 zone gave us problems for 80% of our last meeting. What's the likelihood that it springs another upset on our Bears?
Good if Oregon St. can avoid prolonged scoring droughts against the Cal defense. However, that was an issue in Arizona, even in the win in Tucson. Lately, the defense has been the constant, and the offense has been ebbing and flowing.

2. Calvin Haynes and Jared Cunningham tore us up the last time we played them. Think they'll replicate those performances?

Calvin having a good night will probably be key. He's been hot and cold throughout the season, while Jared has been on a definite upswing. Foul trouble has been the only thing that has slowed him down. Playing at Gill will be a big boost, and with the game being later in the evening against a talented Cal team, there should be a healthy sized crowd inside.

3. Oregon State is the only Pac-10 team that has held Cal at or below 65 points in each meeting since Robinson and Montgomery became their respective coaches. Yet, during this span OSU is 12-18 in the conference. How have other Pac-10 teams had success against your zone defense?
The most effective teams against the Beavers have been good passing teams that play the game above their shoulders well. Teams that can get the ball below the three-- across without trying to dribble past that line then have numbers at the rim.
Good transition teams that can get down the floor before the 1-3-1 can get setup have a definite advantage over half-court teams as well.

4. What will it take for OSU to take that next step and get to the Tournament?
Some more speed, on the order of what Cunningham has brought. Oregon State still only rarely can beat anyone on the break, and lack players that can recover for someone else when a defensive breakdown occurs. These aspects will give the Beavers the options and flexibility to win some more close games. Calvin Haynes is the best offensive player on the team overall, but he lacks the consistency that is needed on a Pac-10 team.

5. Predict a final score.

OSU 65-63. Beavers win on a three at the end.

1. Cal had lots of trouble stopping Talisa Rhea last time out. Talk a little about what she can do and how to stop her.
She can put the ball on the floor to create a shot if need be. Making her go to her left to get a shot seems to sometimes affect her accuracy, though. But rather than over-compensating for her, it is at least as important to ensure no one else gets any rhythm, and has a good night. Talisa almost always has a good night; its more about how much help she gets.

2. After Rhea, who should Cal fans worry about?
Haiden Palmer is the other Beaver capable of having a big scoring night on a regular basis. Kirsten Tilleman is the barometer, though. If she has a good night, scoring OR rebounding, OSU will be tough.
3. OSU was reasonably successful last year. Is this year's struggles mostly due to player graduation, or deeper issues?
Loss of three players now playing professionally in Europe cost a lot of experience. The other issue is related, and is a hesitancy on the part of the players at the 1 and the 2 (Talisa is the 3) to make the entry pass quickly. It has prevented the Beavers from getting an offense in the paint going time and again.

4. What do you anticipate OSU doing defensively to slow down Alexis Gray-Lawson after she scored 47 points in Corvallis?
Rotate a lot of players thru weak-side help to try to limit her options, and cut down on passing lanes into her. And try to avoid another 50 minute game!

5. What do you think a final score will be?

Cal 62-54. Oregon State can't score on the road well enough to win.